Wednesday, August 12, 2020

John & I Are Starting A New Company. Help Us Name It?


I've re-written this post so many times that for a while I decided it just didn't want to be written, so I shelved it.

Now, nearly two months later, I think the problem was me: I've been so unsettled, so unsure about the direction of what I'm doing day-to-day, that telling all of you what John and I've been up to felt too final, too decisive, like I was announcing some big change for Epbot.

The reality is I'm just like you, just making this up as I go, just trying to survive a world in crisis, and help other people do the same.

But I'm also excited about what we've been doing, dang it - so I want to tell you about it!

First, to sum up a long and not-so-tragic backstory, I fell into a hopeless place for a little while. It got dark, it got bad. I'd always been so sure this was what I was supposed to do, so sure that my purpose in life was to bring people together online and encourage them, but suddenly, poof. I questioned everything. Had I ever really helped anyone? Made any kind of difference? Would I ever? And what could help a world this broken, anyway?


I know a lot of you can relate. We've got a lot of empaths in this group, and the amount of anger and hopelessness being screamed into our online spaces is palpable. We can try to limit our exposure online, but cutting out social media entirely can also leave us alone and adrift. So how do we find the right balance?


After many long conversations with both John and my therapist, we kept coming back to the same thing John and I actually started 2020 with: that we wanted to go back to work together. Not online work, where we're in separate parts of the house stressing over servers and the opinions of virtual strangers, but real-life work, where we can be side-by-side painting or fixing a widget for someone who needs it. We wanted to make a tangible difference somewhere offline - maybe not full time, but enough to remind ourselves there's more to life and people than what we see on the internet.

And the part that got us both REALLY excited? The thought of doing all our real-life work for free.

So the past couple of months, that's what John and I've done: we've gone back to work. The same work we were doing back in January and February, in fact, before the lockdown stopped us. We put out an open call on Facebook, and then, taking all the necessary safety precautions with masks and distancing, got to it. We've been painting, repairing drywall, cleaning out closets, hanging ceiling fans, replacing faucets, fixing faulty wiring, and even building more custom furniture. We do about 2 jobs per week, all for free, all for fun.

And you guys, it has been INCREDIBLE. The amount of joy we've had, the utter delight when we get a new list of broken things to fix, when we get to walk into someone's house knowing we're going to leave it a little bit better? It's intoxicating. It's the balance my weary soul needed. John's, too. With Epbot I try so hard to help people, but that help is intangible, often invisible. This is my way to help up close and personal - while in masks from 6 feet away.  ;)

 
I haven't been taking pictures, but here's an office in progress for my friend Melanie. I loooooove working for fellow geeks.

What I'm saying is, in all this uncertainty and fear and grief, this is my next right thing.

For a time, when I was still drowning in my own mental darkness, I thought this meant the end of my online career. I thought I had to move on to something offline to protect my own mental health as well as John's. That thought sent me spiraling into grief. During my brief time away I only missed this community more, and finally, with John's help, I had to admit that Epbot is still my heart and passion. I love this place, and I love all of you. So eventually I began to see this "real life" work as just another extension of Epbot. We can film tutorials, share before-and-afters, maybe even do more fun themed builds like the Sherlock Room to share here alongside my usual Epbot crafts and silliness. So maybe - maybe - I can do both?



Here's where you come in.

First, we need a name. We've already purchased the necessary insurance and licensing so we can legally work for anyone, and since this is technically a new company, I'd like a snazzy moniker. (Then we can order official shirts to wear with the Epbot wearing a hard hat, because that would be adorable.) Since I'm hoping to still feature some of what we do here on Epbot, it could have that in the name, like "Epbot Works" or "Epbot On Location" - only better?  Or it could be something like "The J Team" or "Crop Top Bots," both of which John has already vetoed because he HAS NO SENSE OF WHIMSY. So what do you think, any ideas?

Next, though our personal social circle has kept us busy 'til now, eventually we're going to need more people to work for - and we'd like to work for you. Are you local to central Florida? Do you need something inside your home painted, organized, fixed, replaced, or decorated? Do you have something small & geeky you'd like us to build? OR - do you know someone local who needs help but can't afford to hire a pro? Then please, tell us! We have over 10 years of professional experience as both painters and licensed handymen, and we love a challenge. Our only caveats: no exterior work (it's too darn hot) and for big projects you may have to cover the material costs. Our labor, however, is free.

Send your work wish list (with pictures, if possible) to Projects@Epbot dot com, and we'll be in touch.



(Eva and Suki say hi, because I feel like this post needs more pictures.)

I can't make any promises, because I have no idea where this new road will take us, or even how long it will be financially feasible to keep working for free two days a week on top of running two blogs. I also know it's affected my posting here a little, though hopefully not TOO much. Maybe we'll do this a few more months, or maybe it will be the launch of our next 10 year chapter. All I know is that today we worked two different jobs, fixing all sorts of things first for a school teacher who's about to risk her life for our state's kids, and then for a sweet couple who are both out-of-work and couldn't afford to hire anyone. Tonight I know we've done something good. Tonight, that's all I need.


Wherever you are right now, whatever awfulness 2020 has thrown at you, I hope you've also found your next right thing. If not, then keep your eyes open for it this week! Find something small, something achievable, something tangible that brings you purpose and joy. Maybe it's messaging a different friend every day to check in on them. Maybe it's making masks to give away. Maybe it's finally making that call - the one you've been putting off - to get yourself the help you need. Take the step, spread some light. Do it for yourself, for others, or just for Suki's tiny tongue blep:

 You must admit, it's a very convincing blep.

(Also Suki says you should take more naps.)


If you already know what it is, then tell me what your next right thing is this week. Then tell me what to name our company! I need ideas!



160 comments:

  1. What about project epbot?

    My next step is to open a retail store! We’re selling pellet smokers and all the things that go with them. I hope this works!

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    Replies
    1. I second Project Epbot! Has a nice ring to it :)

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    2. I thought the same thing. Project Epbot sounds good and doesn’t feel limiting.

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    3. That was my first thought too!

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    4. Project Epbot is so cute! Yes!!!

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  2. This is amazeballs! You two are amazing, and continuing to spread light in so many ways. I wish I had a clever name to share with you, but since that's not my forte I'll let your many creative followers share their ideas.

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  3. Wow... just wow. Won't you be my neighbor?
    You guys are the bomb.
    Can't think of a name right now... shoot.
    Bless you. Be careful out there.

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  4. EP:BOT
    Extraordinary Projects: Builders of Things

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    1. THIS IS PERFECT. I came on here, thinking about tossing you a name, but you have already been given the perfect one!!

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    2. Winner! [Mic drop.] Congratulations on your new adventure! So excited for you both!

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    3. Wow! This one is so good! I would never have thought of using the letters of Epbot! That’s amazing!

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    4. DONE. No need to look any further.

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    5. All the hearts! I love it!

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  5. I think that you've already come up with the perfect name: Our Next Right Thing. It conveys both the physical work and the ethos you want to share with the world through it.

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  6. You have amazingly talented and witty folks here, I am sure a name will be forthcoming!
    A bit of wisdom that you know, but bears repeating frequently. The world is always going to be broken. There is no done, no fixed, no finished. What we can do, what we must do - all of us - is do all we can to make it a bit better. Make some happiness, spread some joy, create a smile. Because that is really what matters. When we are gone, that is what is remembered and treasured - it is our legacy to the future. Getting up every single morning of your life and making one person smile is enough. Because joy spreads exponentially. You guys only see splash when the rock hits the water, but the ripples you create spread around the world. You are also blessed with a partnership where you work well together and that is a real treasure! Certainly take advantage of that. And know that you make an important difference to people who have never read your blog. All those ripples that spread out.

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    1. I totally understand, and have done something similar, doing voluntary work in my local community. For 10 years I've done mostly work-at-home stuff in front of a computer, and my introvert has loved that, but this pandemic thing has made me itch to do some things in real life, in my local community, to see that I'm making a difference too!

      I like your suggestions for names and Lyndalybrraryan's 'Our Next Right Thing'. Here are a few more floating out of th eether into my head:
      Bot Builds
      Truebot
      Epbot Implementations

      Good luck, you guys are amazing!

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  7. So, 2020 has been weird, even without the 'rona. My mum died in April (just three weeks after being declared terminal) and it's been rough. But then, two months later, I found out I was pregnant. And then I spent two months feeling awful from the hormones while still grieving my mum. It's been weird, y'all. But while it's been difficult and we've been fighting and frustrated that just NOTHING has been done for the past almost six months, we've also re-evaluate where we want to go and where we want to be. So besides the obvious New Thing growing inside me, we're also moving in a (slightly) new general direction, with a new vision of where we want to end up. Which is both exciting, horrifying, and a huge relief.

    I have no idea what you should call your company. In our house most ideas for company names include the words whisky, madness or anarchy. And none of them seem quite appropriate for a building company. Haha

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  8. Dude, I think you named it already with your email address - Project Epbot. it's perfect! and by the way, yes, you HAVE made a difference with this and with Cake Wrecks. the two places in the universe I am guaranteed to see something either funny, warm, reassuring, or uplifting. everywhere else there be monsters. thank you for everything you do. xxx

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  9. Why not just go with 'Bot Builders?

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  10. This is such a cool and generous thing to do. Good luck and hope it keeps going well!

    Oh, and my name suggestion is "Epbot Onsite" (to complement Epbot Online) with a logo featuring the Bot wearing a hardhat and holding a hammer instead of a flower.

    (Now trying not to get distracted drawing Bots with hammers).

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  11. Epbot Angels: logo could be the 'bot with a hardhat topped by a halo
    Epbot Fixers (or Fixes?)
    Hands of Epbot

    *shrug* just some ideas.

    Also, you are both AWESOME for wanting to do this. Thank you.

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  12. You could look into local volunteer organizations who would probably jump at the chance for someone to help fix those odds and ends that no one seems to have the time/budget/know how to get done. Locally, I have a couple of friends who work for an organization that provides group homes (seven total) for adults with special needs (of a wide variety) to live in. These are actual houses that always have those things that need taken care of just like any home that people live in. Or even a fresh coat of paint to spruce up a living space would make these residents (and their basically live-in care takers) feel good.

    My next right thing is to figure out time...the time to do the things I WANT to do but always seem to get shoved to the bottom of the list until there is no time for them. It's been bugging me for awhile and I need to quit pushing it to the bottom of the list. *sigh*

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    1. This suggestion made me think of Family Promise, which is an organization that helps get homeless families into housing. There's a branch based in Orlando and I'm guessing they would love your help!

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  13. It’s not particularly witty - but what about Epbot Heart? It’s a play on Epcot Center in that the heart is at the core/center of your work.

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  14. You and John are amazing! Side note: I'm about to paint most of the interior of a house. Some of the trim and baseboards are scuffed from the previous owner's wheelchair and will need to be patched or replaced. Should I paint the walls or fixed up trim first?

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    1. Always paint the trim first if you can! That way you don't have to worry if you get paint on the walls, and it's much easier to cut in wall paint over newly painted trim than the other way around.

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  15. Handybots, The Fixits, The Brute Squad

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  16. That's really exciting news! I really look forward to seeing what you do.

    As for names, how about something like EP:Ventures

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  17. Epbot Angel Squad (this name both nods to the free labor aspect and leaves you room to consider other types of projects)

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  18. Amen, Aunt Foggy!
    I have no name for you although I'm sure you guys will come up with the one that works for you. You always do.
    As for me, I retired nearly a year ago and traveled and spent time with family but since this mess, I've been home. I have found creating has been my go to. Vegetable gardening, needlework, relearning crocheting, etc. I'm in the midst of planning my "fall" garden, said with quotes because North Central Florida's fall is quick and still usually hot. The biggest issue for me is getting supplies for my projects and also, not knowing how to build my own raised beds nor having the tools to do so. Still, there are other ways to do this, so work around the problems.
    Perhaps, if you want to keep Epbot in the name of the new company, Epbot, Take 2?

    Stay safe, stay healthy and know, this too shall pass. Lots of love to you all.

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  19. Team Epbot Go (cause of the two j names lol)

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  20. Wow. What a fantastic way to fill your cup while filling the cups of others.

    I like Julie's "Project Epbot." I also like playing on the neighborly aspect of what you're doing, something like "Neighborhood Epbot" or "Friendly Neighborhood Handyman/People." Can you tell I was a big fan of Handyman Negri on Mr. Roger's Neighborhood? ;)

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  21. Oh boy you have opened a can of worms! We are in the middle of refinancing out house in Orlando to get some projects done! I will have so much work for you if you want it, and the money to pay for it! Also I like Epbot Endeavors!

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  22. EpDo'n'mend! Sorry, that's all I've got at the moment, but if I think of anything else...

    I love seeing all your projects and tutorials, your Sherlock room was something else!

    My lovely friend and neighbour Morgan (who originally comes from Maine but now lives in the UK because she rather likes 'proper English beer' strange girl), has had a lot of work done to her home study/office with repaired cornicing and plaster. Her house is very old so she has to use lime plaster and chalk paint to decorate so the walls can still breathe. My funny house is a 60's bungalow, so they couldn't be more different. I know what you mean about the excitement you get from 'projecting' for someone else and doing something special in their home, I am champing at the bit to get paint brush in hand and make it a beautiful space for her. The decorating and dressing styles of our two houses are so opposite and I have never decorated a house like hers before as everywhere I have lived has been more modern properties and I know we are going to have so much fun.

    Through the difficulties of this year I have been doing things like getting my parents groceries (they are both shielding) and doing other bits that I can for them. I have been working from home mostly, which I have never done before, and only doing 1 - 2 days in the office, so I have been feeling very 'trapped'. I think that popping round the corner to do something completely different for a while will be like I've been allowed to spread my wings and fly. I won't be staring at a screen or filling boxes for a courier to collect or trying to find the shopping my Mum wants in the one supermarket I feel safe to go to once a week. I will be staring at a different set of walls that will be changing colour before my eyes like magic and seeing the lovely smile on Morgan's face as we make her a beautiful space, just for her.

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  23. You need a way for people to donate towards materials.

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    1. THIS! Its not feasible for you to always do it for free! Donations accepted for work or a patreon or a go fund me! I for one if you choose to do any of the jobs I send you, will be making a "dontation", and I'm stubborn so you wont be able to stop me!

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    2. Upper right corner

      https://www.paypal.com/webapps/shoppingcart?flowlogging_id=5958dbea32d28&mfid=1597371939864_5958dbea32d28#/checkout/openButton

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  24. FOE Free (F2)
    Fix FOE Free (F3)
    Build FOE Free (BFF)

    You see where I'm going with this. ;-) Good luck!

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  25. You are amazing Jen (and John!). :)

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  26. This is a great idea! There is definitely more happiness in giving than receiving. And ;you will receive the satisfaction of helping a person in need. As for a name, how about 'Fix-a-Widget by Epbot'? Epbot could be wearing the hardhat (with cute stickers on it), wielding a paintbrush or other such widgets, and with a tool belt around his waist. I can totally picture this in my mind, just wish I could draw it ;^}

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  27. Man, you two are cool.
    This is such a great idea.
    I like Friendly Neighborhood Fixers a lot, but also think it might sound shady.
    Good luck and i can't wait to see more of the projects here [though no pressure if you don't have the time :-)].

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  28. Wonder Works would be my suggestion (or Epbot Wonder Works, or Wonder Works by Epbot, etc.), because you build such wonderful, amazing things. :)

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  29. I like 'Epbot Works'.

    Maybe:

    Epbot Action
    Epbot Does It or just Epbot Does

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  30. Yes! Project Epbot! I logged into comments to suggest this but Julie beat me to it :) You guys rock. I wish everyone who is awesome in this world could truly know how awesome they are. And somehow although of course I wish covid had never happened, I can't help seeing the good that's coming out of it, as well as the bad. It's almost like we needed this catastrophe in order for us to dig down and open up about what we really, actually, truly need for life to be ... good for us. Not 'successful', or 'profitable' or even particularly 'productive' (I struggle with that one, it's like not being productive is ... Wicked). John and Jen, please realize that for us anxious ones out there, seeing people we esteem and are fond of taking steps like this GIVES US PERMISSION to dream for ourselves. So you may think this decision was for you, but please know that just sharing this is Making Good all by itself. Wow, this post took a distinct Elphaba turn LOL

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  31. No suggestions but I'm so happy for y'all! My mental health is so much better when I can reflect on my day and see tangible changes from what I did.

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  32. You two are made of so much awesome :) This is the boon 2020 needs for sure. Much love to you both.

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  33. You wonderful, wonderful people. I was thinking of "put on your own oxygen mask first in order to stay conscious so you can help others with theirs." Doing these projects is your oxygen mask to keep yourself going, but simultaneously, it's helping others. The whole thing is just plain oxygen for everyone involved.
    Project Epbot: Angel Squad
    The Jbots

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  34. On FoE, we add -bot to everything to help direct a post to a particular audience. So..
    ProjectBots
    FixItBots
    RenoBots
    HandyBots

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  35. Oh my gosh, I love this so much! And I am so happy I live in Central Florida and maybe, someday can ask you to do an odd job for me!! <3 <3 <3 This makes my heart so happy!!

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  36. You are seriously amazing people. The planet is better because of you.

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  37. Whimsy Workshop
    Wonder Builders
    Whimsy Builders

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  38. Is there any way you can override John's veto of Crop Top Bots because it is fantastic?! My "next thing" is a blog and YouTube channel with recipes and cooking tips for those who cook for one. This was inspired by the combination of my separation and mental bad place that came from the onset of the pandemic (we separated on February 15th and went into stay at home mode on March 12th). My tagline is "Food can be fun, even when you're cooking for one"

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  39. You two are the sweetest! I love that you've found a way to do what you need to do that also helps others so much! And I extra love that Epbot isn't going away--you bring a lot of light into my life. <3

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  40. Epbot, Inc.

    TopBot

    TOP 2 Bot-dum

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  41. This is seriously a beautiful thing you are doing. I'm glad it is bringing you happiness! I also like Project Epbot for a name.

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  42. I don't have any name ideas (as yet) but just wanted to say congratulations on the new venture!!! I only wish you were in Southern California instead of Central Florida, as I could definitely use your help. Can't wait to see more of the great work you're doing.

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  43. I love it! That is so awesome and I wish we had that kind of resource here <3
    What about for a name, playing on Rousabout? I know you are both ANYTHING but unskilled, but it could be fun depending on how it is pronounced:
    RousEpbot

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  44. What a wonderful business idea! How about Epbot Enterprise, or Dapper Design?

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  45. I don’t have any ideas, I just had to tell you that your saying John has no sense of whimsy made me laugh out loud! ๐Ÿ˜†
    I already wanted to move to central Florida to be your neighbor, and now I really want to!
    Best of luck finding an appropriately whimsical name. You guys are the best!

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  46. As for the name, can't help you. As for people who can use your help?
    Contact the local senior centers for seniors living at home with no family around to do minor repairs. You will help them stay in their homes safely and they will LOVE you for that. Energtic People Building Out True love?

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  47. Epbot Projects or Project Epbot

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  48. Epbot Unplugged (and Cordless)

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  49. Love everything about this!! You are both good people!

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  50. Epbot In Action?
    I like a lot of the previous suggestions, too.

    And yes, you were making a difference, you are making a difference, and you will make a difference. I think it's just what you do, and it's a wonderful thing. It's often hard to tell on line because you can't just look over and see it, someone has to think to say something and then actually get around to saying something. So I'm saying something: you've helped. More than you know because how would you know unless I told you? (Which, by the way, is one of my mantras.)

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  51. EPBOT: Workers of Wonders

    (EPBOT: WoW)

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  52. Hi there! Hoping you are able to find the name that fits you best. Since you are doing good for others, I'd like to help you! When you are ready for shirts, let me know and I will help you out. I am also in Central Florida (near the Magic Kingdom). www.hereforthehoopla.com Best of luck!

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  53. Mirth Friendly ๐ŸŒŽ
    Mirth Works

    The Mirthing Center?๐Ÿ˜†

    I'm clearly stuck on a theme.

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  54. Name suggestion: Epbot Does
    For things needed doing, I've got to replace a wall switch and if that doesn't work a ceiling fan but I'm planning on youtubing it and handling it myself though it would be kind of fun having you guys come in and do it. I'm sure there are others that need actual help so I'll leave your expertise to them.

    What a great thing to do for yourself and others in the community. I'm glad you'll be sharing photos and tutorials and whatnot so we can learn and enjoy along with you.

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  55. Project EPBOT or Handi-bots. I'm sure if you run out of friends, your local Habitat for Humanity would be happy for your help and knowledge ��

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  56. Congratulations on this new and exciting venture! And even though many of us live far away, you can still help- like if someone needs a picture scaled for a cricut because they don't know how, or drafting up plans for someone who sees their vision but can't put it on paper, stuff like that. Both of you are awesome people and we all love you both for who you are.

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  57. Just an FYI...you HAVE helped people.
    When you did a post in response to a boy with Autism being bullied, you put a voice out there that says...”it’s okay to be who you are.”
    It felt like someone was on my kids’ team.
    Don’t undervalue what you’ve already accomplished.
    Also, this idea reminds me of the movie Batteries Not Included, where the little flying robots flit around and help fix things! Good luck finding the perfect name!

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  58. I think Mr. Rogers would be proud of you. I'M proud of you! And whatever name you decide on, I think you should have a nifty catchphrase- "We fix the wibbly-wobbly in a timely-wimely manner" or something else totally geektastic!

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  59. Oh yea you!!! You guys are really terrific. I'll bet there are a lot of older folks who are determined to stay in their homes but need things fixed. Maybe there's an organization near where you live that supports elderly people. I mention that because my friend's mother was in that situation--my friend lived far from her mom and there were a ton of little things around the house that needed to be done every time she visited. (Her mom has passed away now but she would have loved you guys!)
    I also know what you mean about this pandemic. I feel as though I have NO reason to complain--we have jobs, we are healthy--but each day has a certain sameness that some days we'll look at each other and say, "Wait . .. did we do that today? Or yesterday?" Doing a physical, tangible, measurable task feels even more meaningful to me now because otherwise I'd just be sitting at the computer all day.
    And I have to admit, I'm selfishly happy to hear that you want to continue Epbot. Thanks.

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  60. I also like Project Epbot! And Epbot Onsite, that someone else suggested. You guys are really great, what a generous thing to do. I wish I lived near you because I'm not handy at all. Good luck!

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  61. HELPBOT! emphasising the h.E.l.P.B.O.T.

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  62. I love this so much and am so glad you've found an outlet for serving and helping others in a tangible way that obviously means so much to you and allows you to use all your handy skills! You two are seriously the best! ♥♥

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  63. I think The J Team should totally not have been veto-ed! It made me giggle snort out loud. :)

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  64. UpBot
    Go get 'em guys...
    Also, check with local churches, or torre local Area of Aging for people who might need help!

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  65. I'm horrible at names, so no help there, but I thought I'd share my next thing.
    I'm learning the accordion. My big scary goal is to develop a set and get good enough to play at the farmers' market.
    And it's so good to see you figuring out what works for you. I'd rather have fewer posts and a happy creator rather than daily posts and inevitable burnout.

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  66. EQ:bot
    Q being the next letter after P and these projects being perfect examples of positive EQ all around!
    Makes me wish I lived in FL instead of KS.

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  67. Replies
    1. Yess! The Botsquad!

      (nod to both Epbot and Princess Bride ... )

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  68. UnWreckitBots as a nod to both Cake Wrecks & Epbot
    RepairBots

    Good luck!

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  69. ....If enough of us say "crop top bots" do we veto John :P
    I don't have a serious name suggestion but this is a wonderful idea and I'm glad you have the freedom to pursue it. Of course your online work is awesome and meaningful but it's so nice to have tangible results sometimes

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  70. My mom is 85 and lives in a +55 apartment complex. I always wish someone was there to help these people who need just little things done, like change the time on the clocks, fix a blind, or move the fans. The worse is computer problems that I cannot fix over the phone! Not enough to call to outside help for, but I'm sure she and her neighbors would love for someone to come in once a month or so. I live two hours away, and before #*^*covid, I would spend most of my time fixing things and not able to really visit. I am so happy for you and John, and I cannot wait to see what the future brings you.

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  71. Something about mushrooms. They grow from dark and dreary spaces but are unique and beautiful. I’m not clever per say, but In Reading your message mushrooms kept coming to mind. ��

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  72. I like Project Epbot too.
    My next right thing...new job as a school librarian. Totally struggling with imposter syndrome. So thankful for a job I know I will love.

    Great things you are doing! Too bad I’m in Oregon. But perhaps, would John be interested in building a puzzle box? My husband loves them.. he is a magician/illusionist and anything tricksy like that he loves! Just a thought. We have the ideas, but not the tools or skills.
    Best of luck in your endeavors!

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  73. I really like Project: Epbot, simple, clear, to-the-point. Or Epbot: On Location could work too.

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  74. Perhaps something Wall-E inspired? A friend of mine named his car Burn-E after a background robot from the movie.

    Also, the Disney 'Next right thing' line made me cry....

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  75. Epbotters: building stuff, fixing things

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  76. handygeeks

    Jen and John of All Trades

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  77. i love everything about this, you both bring pure joy to this dismal world and your fanbase appreciates you, very, very much. i would love to build a treehouse, someday, a whimsical little escape with a spiral staircase.... a girl can dream. I wish you happiness and success and the best is yet to come :::HUG:::

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  78. Oh goodness, I can relate to this so much! I've also been trying to use my time to start new business ventures and find ways to focus on doing small good things for people I come in contact with daily, even if it's just online.

    And I've started a new social media community over on Locals.com - no algorithms to mess with interactions and no big tech overlords! If anyone is interested in sewing & crafting, check it out at https://sewingsphere.locals.com - it's a small group of us right now and we're well insulated from trolls.

    I'm kind of named out at the moment (after coming up with a few things for my own business recently), but it looks like you've got some really great suggestions from previous commenters. You might also want to check out Locals, Jen. It's kind of a combo of Twitter, Facebook, and Patreon and creators own all their content. It's a really new platform (less than a year old) but amazingly developed. There are plans to allow community owners to link their communities in bundles in the future - it's going to be really interesting to see how it all evolves and grows!

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  79. The Dream Fixers
    EpBottomless
    Epbot : Community of Today
    Niceland (Fix-It Felix's town)
    Epbot Page Two

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  80. Who else now has the urge to move to central Florida?

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  81. Ep-Ic Handi-Bots (with apologies to C who has the second part of this already posted! Great minds!) or Ep-Ic Honey-Doers...

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  82. HomeBot Helpers!

    I can just see the image of a squee-worthy house with happy windows as eyes, joyfully watching two Epbots walking up the front walk!

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  83. Wow, look at all these great names for this awesome idea! Into this pot of awesomesauce, I add these lil sprinkles of spicy nomenclature:
    Epbot In Action
    Nerds At Work
    Epbot Helping Hands
    Epbot's Merry Makers

    I live way too far north to ask anything of y'all, so instead, I look forward to the joy you're experiencing and spreading :D

    Best of wishes from the Pine Tree State and the YarnCave <3

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  84. You guys rock! I have no witty name for you to mull over but I sooo get why you do this. Hard to explain but I always got more satisfaction from volunteering in the school lunchroom than planning events with other Moms or making copies ... I just got more out of helping the kids and doing something right then and there for them than the idea of helping. Not sure if that makes sense but that’s all I got. Love you! ❤️ Sue

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  85. I too hit a dark place this year, which made me question my whole existence, and what if I had never ventured down a certain path? Things were bleak for a few weeks, but I kept wandering and made it out, and I'm glad to hear you did, too. Thank you for all you do.

    Someone else mentioned it first, but I like Helpbot. Project Epbot is also pretty good and you could keep your mascot and just modify it as suggested by others. Maybe a heart instead of gauges to show this is the caring 'bot? (Heartbot?)

    There's always Pikachu Nipples. Unless you're saving that for your punk band.

    --Yet Another Jen

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  86. To me, the choice is obvious. It has to be...

    Schlepbot

    schlep (third-person singular simple present schleps, present participle schlepping, simple past and past participle schlepped)

    Schelp (from Yiddish):
    1. (transitive, informal) To carry, drag, or lug.
    2. (intransitive, informal) To go, as on an errand; to carry out a task.

    You're welcome. -TA in Colorado

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  87. this is amazing. you continue to be light grace and inspiration

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  88. My rhyme-living brain wants you to make the company Epbot on the Spot lol. And just so you know, you definitely make a difference. Your post on bra fitting was literally life changing to this generally H-HH cup gal who is no longer being stabbed by ill fitting d cup bras. (That's UK sizing btw, it's L-M US sizing. You can imagine how uncomfortable I used to be lol.) not to mention the joy I find on a regular basis from both of your blogs. Trust me, I know how that hopeless place feels, because I've been there for a while now. But if nothing else, know that seeing a post from you has made that hopeless place fade for a brief period of time on more than one occasion ❤️❤️

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  89. You guys are awesome, and you help me each time I read a post, though I almost never comment. My thing this pandemic was to start a little free library where I live, and then I want to put one on my small town's low income area. Anything that makes you feel connected and contributing to the community is helpful!

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  90. I mean, come on, just when I think you two really couldn't be any nicer or more decent human beings, here you go again, shattering my expectations. What a wonderful idea!

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  91. All I've got is what I already call you two, J Squared (Multiplying Goodness One Project At A Time?) and that I absolutely love you both.

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  92. You two are awesome: excellent and inspiring awe. No matter what you choose to do, you clearly can't help making a difference in the world for good.

    Unfortunately for me I live much too far away: my whole house is a project-in-waiting. If you keep posting those tutorials, though...one day I might be brave enough to try them. :)

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  93. I've long harbored a dream of being an interior designer/refinisher/teacher at my own non-profit. I want to guide/teach/help people decorate their homes with thrift store finds we "fix up" together. People who can't afford nice, pretty things for their homes but want a HOME, not just a plain white box with a torn ugly couch and a tv set on a milk crate. People who work 60+ hours a week at a minimum wage job and never get to relax in a place that feels like "theirs." Sigh. Dreams. Someday.
    So what you are doing sounds just wonderful to me and makes me want to cry.
    Anyhow, lots of great suggestions already, but mine is "Epbot Makes Free." Not as obviously clever, but I love the old-fashioned slightly naughty pun. I hear it, anyway.

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  94. This is THE whitest white privilege nonsense I've ever heard. It's called volunteering. Why not team up with Habitat for Humanity? At least that way you won't be taken advantage of by people who just want something for free.

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    Replies
    1. LOL, wow... it's white privilege to have a set of skills people might be able to benefit from and offer them for free to a community you've built over the last decade+? Dude, you're welcome to decide this isn't how you'd spend your free time, but it's a little extra to crap on someone who decides this adds value to their life.

      Delete
  95. Epbot ImaginYates

    Motto: from figment to reality (see what I did there?)

    Imaginate is defined in urban dictionary as being in the process of imagining!

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  96. What a wonderful, fulfilling thing you've found! May I suggest, for those who aren't local, that you post these home improvement projects on YouTube from start to finish so we can follow along? We all love to watch those, you can generate some income from views to offset your costs, and those who don't live near you can still benefit from your years of knowledge and experience! So happy you've found an outlet.

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  97. Since you are fulfilling the wishes of people who need projects done on there homes and you and John are fulfilling your wish of helping others, how about "As You WishBot"? Plus it is a sly reference to "The Princess Bride" ;^}. I'm sorry if I'm spamming you with this name. I tried commenting from my phone and when I submitted the comment, it didn't indicate it had been received.

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  98. Yeah! I wish I lived closer and could have you do some fun projects for me. I'm a nerd, but mine would probably be dinosaur themed. Regardless, thank you for listening to your intuition and following your passion. It demonstrates that the rest of us can too!

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  99. DIYates

    YatesCreates

    Florida Couple Fixes Homes

    Florida Couple Hailed for Fixing Homes

    The Project Rescuers

    Home Epgrades

    I like a lot of the other suggestions too.

    -Kimstu

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  100. Epic Construction. Building cosplay and whimsy into your life.

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  101. Hubby and I, Lester and Deb were doing software consulting and programming, and came up with LADEUS, Lester And Deb Everything Under the Sun. I tried JAJEUS but it doesn't roll off the tongue, so how about John and Jen and Cake Too!

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  102. How about... Epbot Works ? :)

    ~ Janae

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  103. Squee. That's my suggestion, I'm not squeeing. I rarely squee. I squicked before. I do a lot of squicking.

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  104. I already had such respect for both of you and that has somehow just escalated even more. This is so amazing of you. I'm not sure if you'd be interested in it, but if you filmed your projects and then put them up on YouTube, I know I for one would loooove watching your stuff! And you might be able to get some revenue from that as well? Just a thought! Bless you both!

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  105. Hi Jen. 48 years old & I have never commented online, but you & your work brings me joy every day, so I feel the need to just send some positive vibes your way. There would be a gaping black hole if you were to ever leave the online world. Keep up the amazing work! You ROCK!!!

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  106. This is delightful... And such a good example of putting physical good out into the world. I am also amused because I never ever in a million billion years thought I could say that my dad and Epbot have something in common. You see, he's a handy guy (without your more creative flair but with metric tons of practical skills) and he's been helping out elderly people (mostly spinsters and widows) for a while now - charging only for materials because they INSIST. It started with a neighbor who was a widow and asked if he knew someone who she could trust to do some work around her house. She had gotten ripped off prior. He jumped in and did all of her odd jobs. Then she passed his number to a friend... And so on and on and on. Now that he's retired, it's practically a full-time job and it brings him joy and amusing stories. Sometimes random garden vegetables and cookies, too, and the occasional $5 bill in a Christmas card.

    Go out. Do good things. Create those ripples in the continuum that spread support and love. <3 - Angie

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  107. I LOVE you both so much!

    This will be one of the most AMAZING experiences and I can't WAIT to for this!

    It's like the Super-powered rainbow of Epbot is going to trickle out into the world so that a BIGGER circle of people will get to witness how amazing you both truly are and set another example of just how much good there is going on in this world...if you're willing to look.

    Looking forward to this!

    And if you guys need help, labor, transportation...WHATEVER...I'm a message away.

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  108. If you ever need a vacation at Tahoe, let me know. I have a cabin that could keep you busy for a good long time!

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  109. epbot2go

    You guys make my heart happy.

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  110. First time commenting, long time lurker of the shadows. I love Epbot and your talent, projects, parties, and whimsy. Allow me to submit for your approval: The Epbodies or Epbotties, Visitors From Another Plan-It!!! love you guys

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  111. First time commenting, long time lurker of the shadows. Submitted for your approval: Epbotties Visitors From Another Plan-It! Love your whimsy, parties, DIY and kindness.

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  112. Name idea: One Little Spark (by EPBOT)

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  113. Hi, no name ideas, but I am so happy you have figured out a way to do what makes you happy. I made a similar decision to change my nutrition career direction to one that involves actual cooking for people so that I can work with my hands! Just know you and John are so admired :)

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